- Ethereum remains the top Layer-1 ecosystem by TVL and token count.
- Ethereum used its first-mover advantage to cement its position as the leader among L1s.
- BNB Chain and Avalanche are far behind in second and third place.
The Layer-1 blockchain ecosystem continues to evolve at a rapid pace. Still, Ethereum remains the dominant leader in the space, with BNB Chain, and Avalanche trailing behind.
Ethereum: Undesputed King of Layer-1
Ethereum remains the leader among Layer-1 blockchains, according to the latest report by CoinGecko. The second-largest crypto by market cap boasts $32.1 billion in total value locked (TVL) on its chain.
Ethereum also hosts 3,578 crypto tokens on its chain, from native cryptos like Shiba Inu to wrapped versions of tokens on other chains, like Wrapped Bitcoin (wBTC).
According to CoinGecko, Ethereum’s dominance stems from its first-mover advantage and a strong developer community. Strong network effects enable Ethereum to maintain its dominant position in the L1 market.
Ethereum is the first blockchain network to enable smart contracts. Decentralized finance (DeFi), decentralized apps (dApp), and non-fungible tokens (NFT) all run on blockchains with smart contracts.
BNB Chain and Avalanche Trail After Ethereum
Ethereum is not the only Layer-1 out there. BNB Chain and Avalanche are emerging as big players in the space, trailing behind Ethereum.
BNB Chain ranks second, with 2,992 cryptocurrencies and a TVL of $5.1 billion. Developed by Binance, BNB Chain boasts low fees and is compatible with the Ethereum Virtual Machine (EMV). This enables it to tap into a larger pool of developers. However, due to the fact that Binance retains control over the chain, critics question whether BNB Chain can power truly decentralized applications.
Avalanche, created by Ava Labs, holds the third position, with over 343 cryptocurrencies and a TVL of $865 million. It emphasizes scalability and transaction speeds while offering smart contract functionality and EVM compatibility.
Scalable networks like Fantom, Cronos, Solana, and Cardano are among the rest of the networks in the top ten by TVL.
On the Flipside
- Ethereum’s high gas fees and network congestion issues have opened the door for alternative smart contract networks. However, these networks often have to sacrifice decentralization.
- Curiously, CoinGecko did not include Tron’s blockchain in its list. Justin Sun’s network is the second largest L1 chain by TVL, at $5.48 billion, according to DeFi Lama.
Why You Should Care
Layer 1 blockchains are the basis of the entire DeFi, dApp, and NFT industries.
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